R65 and R77 nailed it.
We are taught that our lives are our responsibility: "If you aren't successful or if you have misfortune, there is something wrong with you, change it."
We could just as easily taught that a person's success and fulfillment depends on his contributions to society, and when a person is suffering, society has a responsibility to help.: Life is a two-way street.
That is not the attitude in other countries.
What's the difference between a British worker and a U.S. worker? The British worker sees a billionaire driving a Rolls and says, "We all should have nice cars."
The U.S. worker says, "If I work harder I can have a Rolls."
That attitude is pervasive because it is in the interest of the rich who own the corporations that own the media don't want us blaming them. They want us blaming us.
Utah Phillips put it this way.
"All of us assign blame in our own best interest. Right?
"Well, if we assign blame in our own best interest, that means blame is relative. And if blame is relative, then one of the important functions in society becomes who controls the blame patterns.
"Why is it that large bodies of workers, like in my country, assign blame downward to some welfare chisellers down at the bottom, you know, they say "trying to get a little bit of something for nothing," and they never assign blame upward to the handful of big-time chisellers at the top who get a whole lot of something for doing nothing at all?
"Well, that's because the blame pattern is manipulated....the government reaches out through its media, in every home, and pushes those buttons and pulls those levers and elicits massive response for or against anything it chooses."
- Utah Phillips